They are here, they are ours, and we cannot stand by and let them be deported.
This petition had 5,781 supporters
After nearly three years, the Kilcoy ‘Bangladeshi Boys’ as they are affectionately known, have become valued members of our small rural community and, for some of us, they have become part of our families. These sixteen men are immigration success stories, with all of them having worked, paid taxes and volunteered in countless community activities and events.
The same ages as our sons, grandsons and brothers they each left their families and fled their home country of Bangladesh, which has been rife with political power struggles and violence for over 40 years. After travelling on a perilous journey by boat with some spending up to 5 days without food and 2 without water, they were transported to Australian Detention Facilities to await their fate. The men spent between 3 - 20 months in detention before being granted Bridging Visas (with working rights and Medicare access), and choosing to make Kilcoy home. These men have demonstrated a willingness and desire to assimilate into the Australian community, however their current position of virtual visa suspension and immediate risk of deportation back to Bangladesh has put them, and the few people able to support them, into a near state of panic.
With the growing support from Somerset Regional Councillors, Medical Superintendent of Kilcoy Hospital, Chamber of Commerce, Village Committee, and many more groups and community members, we call on Peter Dutton, Minister for Immigration and Boarder Protection, to listen to the voters of Australia, especially the Kilcoy community. We ask him to review their cases, reverse the negative outcomes of the Refugee Review Tribunal process and allow our ‘Bangladeshi Boys’ to stay.
Please see media coverage to date on this heart-wrenching story:
SBS; The Feed:
ABC Radio National:
- Kilcoy calls for abattoir worker asylum seekers to be allowed to stay
- Small rural town fights to keep its 'Bangladeshi boys'
- New report on Bangladesh's human rights abuse supports concerns of asylum seekers not wanting to return
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